I test my limbs.
I open my eyes.

I spread my wings.

I fly.
Skim low, open road.
And touch down

…and feel something on my foot.
A mark.

I have marked myself.

But nothing of it, spring forward, take off again—!

—again I brush against more
My wing no longer

I stumble, dipping limbs and wings, and the pigment is swept onto my body
first wild and—beautiful!—and then turning ugly
wounds of
patterns of
my life.

It is my life, and I stand
Perhaps protective of some
but marked in a dozen places for all to see.

All to see.

And then I see them.
The ones who, without dipping anything into the paint, are marked.
Painted from birth.

…and this blasted narrator can’t see that they have patterns too.

(If you’re worried about the use of “marked” here, try the linguistic use of the word.)

Part of NaCreSoMo.